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Hartke amp history/lineage

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by BillyB_from_LZ, Apr 4, 2005.


  1. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    I now own two Hartke amps...an HA-5000 and an HA-4000. If the amps didn't have brand names on them, you'd swear (IMO) that they were built by different companies as there is little family resemblance.

    The HA-5000 has an aluminum front panel, blendable solid state and tube preamps, a graphic EQ, on-board compression, active bass and treble controls (Hi/Lo contour), smoothly rotating controls, toroidal power transformer and a fixed speed fan.

    The HA-4000 has a plastic front panel, 100% solid state construction, variable contour control in the mids, four band semi-parametric EQ, a low harmonic enhancer, detent-like controls, mute button, tuner out, E-I construction power transformer (IIRC) variable speed cooling fan, etc.

    In other words, they couldn't be more different. Anyone know why?
     
  2. Dirty Dave

    Dirty Dave

    Oct 17, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Variety, I guess. Different people have different preferences or requirements. For example, I prefer the parametric EQ over the graphic EQ.

    My question to you is how much different do they sound and which one do you like better?
     
  3. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    The first Hartkes were the 3500 and 7000, the same except the 7000 had two power amps for biamping. Then the lower powered 2000 was brought out, same as the 3500 except for power. The 2500 and 2000 were used in the first generation of Hartke combos. When they perceived a niche for a lower cost biamp head, so they came out with the 5000. Recently the trend towards plain BIG mono heads led them to "upgrade" the 3500 into the 5500.

    When the trend started towards simpler, knob oriented heads so the 3000 and 4000 were introduced for that market.

    The 1400 head is the odd duck, it was designed for the 1415 and 1410 combos but also sold as a standalone head (you may recall when Sam Ash blew these out for $99).
     
  4. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Thanks Brian, that's exactly what I was looking for!!!
     
  5. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    I know that Hartkes are less expensive heads, and I gather that they're poo-pooed a little as.. non-pro heads or something, and I've heard comments here implying reliability problems or something (with Sampson stuff in-general at least) - but I'm still thinking of getting one.

    Here's why: Right now I'm running that little 1400-cheapy, and I really like the tone I'm getting from it. I'm also surprized by how loud it sounds for the Wattage, and when I crank it up it starts to get a certain solid state sounding, more-aggressive bark that I like (not a buzzing clipping sound at all - I mean just.. I dunno; maybe it's that 'Tranient Attack' circuitry or something).

    I play rock bass, always use a CS-3 compressor, and usually use my ODB-3 with the gain kept way down, for just some harmonic distortion - not clipped-distortion (I suppose I consider my non-overdrive sound a 'special effect' for... like I use clean for Blue Jean Blues and Roof With A Hole by the Meat Puppets).

    One part of my 'signature tone' here, is that I like is to crank the high-mids control full-up, or nearly up all the way - the other three tone controls stay pretty close to flat. I love right where this range is; it adds a certain growly-'quack' that makes the bridge pckup tone like an organ or synth or something with the overdrive on. This organ-ish sound is especially thrilling to me when I tap parts, which I'm getting a bit better at now.

    Anyway: I had thought to myself that I wish I could have the same preamp and tone sections, just more power. Then I just in the last few days first discovered this HA3000 head, with its four-knob rotory EQ - I never knew about this 3000/4000 series! What I'm wondering, of course, is whether this HA3000 could be just what I was thinking of - my familiar 1400 with more power?

    I found literature that said the high-mid control on the 3000 is centered on 770Hz, but couldn't find the same spec for EQ-centers on the 1400.

    Anybody know anything about some of this stuff?

    Joe
     
  6. Another option for you to consider is a slave amp or a PA amp with the new Hartke footpedal preamp/DI. It seems to have the same tone and shape controls as the 3000, although I have to admit I have not tried it.
     
  7. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Joe P...if you bought a HA-4000 the EQ section has two semi-parametric bands (for the low and high mids) so you can select your own frequency, boost amount and bandwidth...and then have a 400 watt (at 4 ohm) poweramp behind it.

    With luck and careful shopping, you'd be amazed how cheaply you can find a nice used HA-4000...

    Some of the other Hartke heads have a graphic EQ. The Greenfield, WI Music Go Round store (76th street) had a used HA5000 head when I was in there a few weeks ago. The HA5000 has two internal power amps, both rated 250 watts at 4 ohms and can be run either full range or biamped (one amp for lows, one amp for highs). Totally different preamp than the 1400, 3000 or 4000.
     
  8. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    Hmm!

    I was just at the Music-go-round... Nooo! - it was Record Head ON Greenfield! Hm (!).

    Thanks, Man -

    Joe
     
  9. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    The store is just south of 894 off of 76th street. Turn left before the Solid Gold McDonalds and it's almost straight ahead into the strip mall...

    In all, it's a pretty good store and a must-stop if I'm in Milwaukee...
     
  10. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    Ha - the Solid Gold McDonalds; I'd almost forgotten about that place. Now that you mention it, I don't know if I've EVER been to Music-Go-Round! I'll make it a point to get down there soon.

    You should give me a heads-up when you'll be in town next. I'd like to MEET a TB'er once! ..Maybe this is all just some wierd Matrix-thing, and none of us are real...

    I'm hardly ever way down on that side of town - Why, it's practically half-way to Chicago, for heaven's sake!

    Joe
     
  11. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Some of us are real...

    If you ever find yourself in Kenosha, the Music Go Round store at Hwy 50 and Green Bay Rd, owned by the same folks as the Greenfield store, is pretty good. And then you're just a block north of Music Center of Kenosha who has a rather well stocked bass department.